03.21.2017 Break in Raised Tread on Curiosity Wheel
02.27.2017 Swirling Dust in Gale Crater, Mars, Sol 1613
02.27.2017 Dust Devil Passes Near Martian Sand Dune
02.27.2017 Sand Moving Under Curiosity, One Day to Next
12.13.2016 Now and Long Ago at Gale Crater, Mars
12.13.2016 Where's Boron? Mars Rover Detects It
10.03.2016 Curiosity Self-Portrait at 'Murray Buttes'
10.03.2016 Butte 'M9a' in 'Murray Buttes' on Mars
09.19.2016 Ribbon Cutting
09.09.2016 Farewell to Murray Buttes (Image 5)
09.09.2016 Farewell to Murray Buttes (Image 4)
09.09.2016 Farewell to Murray Buttes (Image 3)
09.09.2016 Farewell to Murray Buttes (Image 2)
09.09.2016 Farewell to Murray Buttes (Image 1)
08.26.2016 Out-of-this-World Records
03.30.2016 Erisa Hines
03.30.2016 Buzz Aldrin
02.12.2016 Women in Science
02.09.2016 Adam Steltzner, a JPL engineer
01.27.2016 Night Close-up of Martian Sand Grains
01.27.2016 Curiosity Self-Portrait at Martian Sand Dune
12.17.2015 Alteration Effects at Gale and Gusev Craters
12.17.2015 Full-Circle View Near 'Marias Pass' on Mars
12.11.2015 Surface Close-up of a Martian Sand Dune
12.11.2015 Martian Sand Disturbed by Rover Wheel
Thanks for the ScrubThis image from Curiosity's Mast Camera shows NASA's Curiosity rover just after discarding a soil sample as part of its first "decontamination" exercise. A small amount of remnant material is visible inside the delivery tube, which is magnified in the blow-up at lower right. The Collection and Handling for In-Situ Martian Rock Analysis (CHIMRA) tool on the end of the rover's arm had just finished shaking some scooped-up soil thoroughly inside the sample-processing chambers to scrub the internal surfaces, putting it through a sieve and dividing it into the appropriate portions.
When the decontamination process has been performed three times and actual sample distribution is ready to occur, the samples will be delivered to the Chemistry and Mineralogy and the Sample Analysis at Mars instruments.
The amount being discarded here was about the volume of half a baby aspirin.
The rinse-and-discard cycles serve a quality-assurance purpose similar to a common practice in geochemical laboratory analysis on Earth.
This image was taken by Curiosity's right Mast Camera (Mastcam-100) on Oct. 10, 2012, the 64th sol, or Martian day, of operations. Scientists white-balanced the color in this view to show the Martian scene as it would appear under the lighting conditions we have on Earth.
Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS